Councilors to Discuss Changes to Tattoo Ordinance

    Changes to a city ordinance would mean owners of tattoo parlors and tattoo artists themselves would pay more money to keep practicing.
    But they don't seem to mind.
    "Overall I think it's a good idea just to help the industry," says AJ Kappes, a tattoo artist at Abstract Ink Tattoos and Body Piercings.
    Three new fees would be established.
    One is an apprenticeship fee of $100.
    That means a person who's learning the art under direct supervision would pay a one time fee solidifying their year of training.
    "The apprenticeship fee is a great idea because it will help the city keep track of apprentices more.  They used to not really do that.  It was more of a trust thing, like you sign a piece of paper and get your license and that's it," Kappes says.
    The second is a temporary artist fee of $100.
    So if an out-of-town artist wants to temporarily work in a local tattoo parlor while passing through town, they'd have to pay in order to do so.
    "Say if we want a really good artist to do a guest spot for a week or two, then we'll allow that without them having to pay $500 for an annual fee," Kappes says.
    Last is a testing fee of $50.
    Members of the Wichita Falls-Wichita County Health Department say a survey of fees show the new fees would be in line with other jurisdictions.
    There was not a request to increase existing fees.
    City councilors will discuss this ordinance at Tuesday's city council meeting.

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